No one wants to lose their hair. That’s why there’s hair loss myths: Hats? The sun? Stress? Grandma?! No, no, no, and certainly not grandma! In reality, there’s an underlying biological cause to male pattern baldness, and once you know that it’s easier to debunk the top hair loss myths.
Myth 1: Sunshine and Hats Cause Baldness
There’s two types of people in this world: those who wear hats and those who don’t. If either the sun or hats caused baldness then we wouldn’t even need to consult science to debunk this myth; we’d just need to see who’s been shopping at Lids. Collegium Antropologicum, a journal of medicine, reports that UV damage of the hair certainly occurs, but it’s not the cause of male pattern baldness. Similarly, when Time magazine asked, “Can wearing a hat contribute to baldness?” the answer was that hats can damage hair but not lead to baldness.
Myth 2: If Your Maternal Grandmother Was Bald You’re More Likely To Be Bald
Look, work out your family issues in therapy, and not by blaming certain family members for baldness at the dinner table. Yes, the NIH says that a predisposition toward baldness is hereditary, but it’s a numbers game and not the blame game. YOU LEAVE GRANDMA ALONE! Simply put: the more bald people in your family the more likely you are to also be bald.
Myth 3: Stress causes hair loss.
The answer the Mayo Clinic provides to the question of, “Can stress cause hair loss?” is, “Yes, stress causes telogen effluvium, trichotillomania, and alopecia areata.” Let’s unpack these made up sounding words to debunk one of the top hair loss myths. Technically, stress causes hair loss in three reversible ways.
- Telogen effluvium: Stress forces hair follicles into stasis. Months later, hairs begin to fall out without provocation, or when pushed to it by combing or washing.
- Trichotillomania: Hair pulling as a coping method for stress.
- Alopecia areata: Exact causes unknown, but may include stress severe enough that the one’s own immune system attacks the hair, leading to hair loss.
Also, as reported by Dermatology Practical & Conceptual, a medical journal, dietary restrictions can be severe enough that your body lacks the nutrition or calories to make hair grow. Eating healthy is actually an effective form of hair loss prevention!
Myth 4: We Don’t Know What Causes Male Pattern Baldness
According to the National Institute for Health (NIH), male pattern baldness, also known as “androgenetic alopecia”, is caused by “dihydrotestosterone”, which is a type of hormone known as an “androgens”. Androgens regulate hair loss in men and women. So far, researchers have confirmed that the gene AR causes androgenetic alopecia (although scientists suspect other genes may also play a role).
AR throws off the means by which the body responds to dihydrotestosterone, which is what somehow causes baldness (scientists aren’t sure on the exact mechanics yet). So far, however, what scientists do agree on is that AR does not compel men to put on hats and if it did it wouldn’t matter because HATS DON’T MAKE YOU BALD, MOM! STOP TELLING ME NOT TO WEAR HATS!
Myth 5: Everyone goes bald in their old age.
EVERYONE?! If you consult the American Hair Loss Association (AHLL), you’ll learn that, by age 35, two-thirds of men will experience some form of hair loss. By age 50, 85% of men will have thinning hair. And as far as male pattern baldness is concerned, 25% of men will experience androgenetic alopecia before the age of 21. So, not everyone experiences hair loss, not everyone’s hair loss is the same, and everyone who experiences hair loss doesn’t do so at the same age. However, the numbers are staggering and you are certainly not alone in your hair loss journey.
If hair loss is something you face regardless of myths, then maybe it’s time to look at some hair loss solutions. If you’re interested in learning more about scalp micropigmentation, click HERE to schedule a free consultation with one of our SMP practitioners.